Rodney Campbell's Blog

Time Tunnel

by on May.17, 2022, under Photography

Time Tunnel

Time Tunnel

NIKON Z 7 + NIKKOR Z 14-30mm f/4 S @ 14 mm, 444 + 292 sec at f/8, ISO 100

This one is a test shot for an upcoming light painting session with Gerry

I found this spot when walking our dog recently. I’ve been looking out for locations for light painting in our local urban environment

This is a really nicely artworked pedestrian tunnel under a multi lane road

With 5 to 10 minute exposures for our typical light painting we need locations which are dark. When I shared the spot with Gerry we had concerns. There’s a row of light fittings inside along a corner of the tunnel. There are street lights on the road above both ends of the tunnel

I decided to recce the location last night to see if it was going to be viable

I took just my camera with the 14-30mm lens, a small tripod, as well as my LED umbrella, a single strand of EL wire and my new very small pocketable Anduril 2 based Emisar D4V2 torch

Thankfully the lights inside the tunnel were not on – excellent. Now I only had the ambient light pollution from the street lights and alas a full moon

After first doing a quick test shot of 5 seconds @ ISO 6400 and f/8 I could see definite promise of being able to support a 5 minute exposure at ISO 100

I did this shot in two parts to limit the overall exposure time and the chance of overexposing via ambient. If we had more people we’d just do the whole lot in parallel in one exposure. As I was by myself I did the majority of the frame in one go. This included the orb components (with the LED umbrella) and the fairy sparkles (with the D4V2 in party strobe momentary mode). The green EL wire mist at the bottom I did in a separate exposure

Note: These photographs (especially the wider shots) look much better when larger. To see larger versions in an inline overlay slideshow gallery viewer click any of the images.

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Captured Entity

by on May.16, 2022, under Photography

Captured Entity

Captured Entity

NIKON Z 7 + NIKKOR Z 14-30mm f/4 S @ 14 mm, 633 sec at f/8, ISO 100

Our third shot of the evening and we’re refining the lighting. (or throwing more kitchen sinks at it – you choose :)). Refinements include improvements in the way the inner orb is captured by the outer lines; Gerry’s red lighting of the plinth at the front; and of course his pixelstick for the surrounding fire; and lighting the orb stand with some EL veins; I also tested some “fairy dust”; Finally added some squared red lines around the inner orb with a tiny red LED. However we weren’t a fan and ditched that idea for follow up orbs

Note: These photographs (especially the wider shots) look much better when larger. To see larger versions in an inline overlay slideshow gallery viewer click any of the images.

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The Rift

by on May.13, 2022, under Photography

The Rift

The Rift

NIKON Z 7 + 14.0 mm f/2.4 @ 14 mm, 629 sec at f/8, ISO 100 + 41 sec at f/8, ISO 800 x 70 Frames

This piece of epicness which I’ve titled “The Rift” was our last composition for the evening and probably my favourite of the night

Gerry had just one single shot of steel wool so we had to make it count. No pressure :). He’s doing the steel wool spin and using my 10 colour torch to light various things. I’m spending the whole of the 629 second exposure going nuts with the lime green EL wire lighting ALL the ground surfaces in the scene 🙂

Blend that with our 45 minutes of star trails (70 x 41 second exposures) and voila. Keen eyes might notice that I reprocessed the star trails from scratch for this shot. The trails are in reverse and falling down to earth in this image

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Open Doorway

by on May.12, 2022, under Photography

Open Doorway

Open Doorway

NIKON Z 7 + NIKKOR Z 14-30mm f/4 S @ 14 mm, 523 sec at f/8, ISO 100

The pride banner reigns supreme in this one. Gerry had to do a little tinkering with his pixelstick; to ensure we got a single continuous banner all the way around

Even then he was afraid it would go wrong and like a scared little … he had me stop his light painting frame and start a new one just for the banner in a separate frame (just in case :)). I had faith in his ability and left mine running to capture it all in one frame :). Ye of no faith…

So what happened in the 500 odd seconds before the banner at the end…

Well a lot of of my lime green EL wire like… everywhere 🙂

A little red light from the 10 colour torch at the front

The real difference however was Gerry doing that strange looking green dome. This was done using his green plastic cricket stump. He’d actually found this out at Boora point the weekend before. Attaching this to the pole he normally does the other domes with. Our first go at this was a bit crazy. He’d waved it around like he would for the normal domes (done with a point LED colour light). With what is essentially a light tube this didn’t work very well… it produced what could charitably be called a mess :). This second go produced a better and more interesting effect. Food for further thought…

Note: These photographs (especially the wider shots) look much better when larger. To see larger versions in an inline overlay slideshow gallery viewer click any of the images.

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Fortuitous

by on May.11, 2022, under Photography

Fortuitous

Fortuitous

NIKON Z 7 + NIKKOR Z 20mm f/1.8 S @ 20 mm, 10 sec at f/1.8, ISO 2000 x 4 Frames

This is a vertical panorama stitch of four frames taken with the pretty awesome native Z 20mm f/1.8 lens. Shooting it wide open at f/1.8 lets in a lot of light. Still at wide open the stars are nicely pinpoint and without any serious aberrations even in the corners. It’s 11:50PM and the milky way core is nicely above the fort

We didn’t have pano rails with us for this session so we had to manually adjust the overlap by eye (in complete darkness!). I’d actually taken 8 frames from pointing somewhat downwards all the way up to slightly behind vertical. However for this final result I only use 4 of those frames

The actual pano stitch was a total PITA. It’s somewhat fortuitous I got anything out of them. Lightroom and Photoshop just plain refused to usefully stitch any combination of input frames. I ended up having to manually force an external pano stitching application

On the plus side the milky way was way more visible (even to the naked eye) this night; compared to our two previous astro sessions at Boora Point (Malabar) and Hornby Lighthouse (South Head)

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